Voting woes

The Temple News thinks the voter ID law is a nuisance to student voters. On March 14, Pennsylvania became the 16th state to require voters to show photo identification at the polls. The new law

The Temple News thinks the voter ID law is a nuisance to student voters.

On March 14, Pennsylvania became the 16th state to require voters to show photo identification at the polls. The new law requires voters to produce a Pennsylvania driver’s license or another form of government-issued photo identification. The state will accept college IDs or personal care home IDs so long as they are current and include an expiration date. This new legislation came in order to prevent voter fraud.

However, “Raising the unsubstantiated specter of mass voter fraud suits a particular policy agenda…claims of voter fraud should be carefully tested before they become the basis for action,” as cited in a policy brief on voter fraud by the Brennan Center for Justice at New York University School of Law.

The Temple News recognizes that this new law possesses many problems for eligible voters. Some argue that this controversial law is an attempt to disenfranchise and discourage minority and elderly voters. However, the same way that campaigns were funded to register new voters in the 2008 elections, should be the same way that campaigns are funded to ensure all eligible voters are properly equipped with the necessary and appropriate identification to cast their vote in the 2012 elections.

The Temple News supports the Temple Student Government’s initiative toward creating new Owl Cards that comply with the expiration date requirement stated by the state voter ID law as reported in “Dems., TSG call for ID expiration dates” on p. 1 by John Moritz.  If the intentions of the voter ID law are not meant to be discriminatory, then proposed legislation to ease the complications of obtaining a proper ID need to be created immediately.

Obviously, we don’t support voter fraud, but The Temple News does not see voter fraud as either a serious threat. It’s clear that this law does more harm than good and we’ll support campus initiatives that will ease the effects of this law and make it easier for students to vote.

1 Comment

  1. The fraud that exists on election day is not limited to the dead voting. The Brennan Center policy brief is neither official evidence or un-biased in its approach. The report ignored convictions of fraud including cases of double voting. It said there was no significant evidence of fraud of voter impersonation but did not study cases where voters arrive and are sent away being told they had already voted.

    The issues that only common sense tells you are very extensive may best solved by simply requiring voters to be verified. One way to verify is to use photo ID’s. There are many other effective ways to verify a voter’s identity meaning one should not need to have a photo ID in order to vote.

    It is easier to identify fraudulent voting when the requester asks for the ballot of a deceased person. It is much more difficult to identify the ballots cast in the name of living voters who did not show up in person. Since in most cases the polling officials are not even looking to identify such activity, it is not reported and classified as non-existent.

    Photo ID’s help to enable officials to verify that voters actually are who they claim to be. Many other methods can also be used to due the same thing, reasonably verify the identity of voters.

    It is far more important that we as a society realize that identifying voters is more important than one method or another. Holding officials accountable and training them to do their jobs of protecting against voter fraud is perhaps the most critical issue. Properly punishing those who criminally violated the voting laws is another very important point that state legislatures need to address.

    Show ID to Vote. Show “I Deserve” to Vote. It is more than just a photo ID.

    Learn more about all sides of the voter fraud issues at or on facebook.

    Ralph Zazula

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